As Lebanon holds its first parliamentary elections in nine years and Iraq paves a way forward in the aftermath of the war against ISIS, many questions remain as to what the political future holds for both countries. The parliamentary elections in Lebanon on May 6, and in Iraq on May 12, serve as a barometer for transparency, inclusion, and the political realities in both countries. The polls have raised pressing political and governance issues such as how to overcome sectarianism, corruption, and economic stagnation in order to encourage further openness and plurality.
How will the results of these elections reflect the political, economic, and social realities in Lebanon and Iraq, as well as the future security of the Levant? How will the new governments tackle issues of widespread unemployment and promote transparency in government? With the conflict in Syria, what are the prospects to achieve and maintain stability?

The Middle East Institute (MEI) is pleased to host a panel discussion to examine these issues. MEI's Bilal Y. Saab and Paul Salem will be joined by Abbas Kadhim (SAIS) Omar al-Nidawi (Gryphon Partners) and Bilal Wahab (WINEP) for a two-hour panel event moderated by MEI's director for conflict resolution and the Track II Dialogues initiative, Randa Slim.